5 Ways a Mom’s Self Confidence Affects Her Daughter’s Self Confidence

by | Jan 12, 2015 | Empowering Girls

If you could give your daughter one quality that would most enhance her chance for leading a successful life–what would it be?

Many experts say the greatest gift is positive self-belief. It turns out that a mom’s level of self-confidence and how she expresses herself enhances or sabotages her daughter’s self-beliefs. Here are five Mom Confidence Builders that can boost your daughter’s confidence as well:

1. Find Confident Role Models

A study found that a mother’s own confidence level was far more powerful determiner on her child’s self-esteem than her occupation, income, education, religion and even IQ.  One quick test is ask yourself: “If my child’s self-beliefs were only based on my words and actions, what would she believe about herself?” Your answer should guide what you model and how you interact with your daughter.

Mom Confidence Builder: Find a female role model such as J.R. Rowling, Michelle Obama, or your Great Aunt Harriet.  Share why you admire her and encourage your child to seek out strong women to copy and look up to. (Hopefully, you’ll make the list!)

2. Change Your Self Talk 

Mothers with poor self-beliefs often bombard themselves with a steady stream of derogatory messages.  Self-talk is a critical part of how we acquire self-beliefs. Research indicates that eighty-five percent of the time we talk, we’re speaking to ourselves and those inside messages help or harm our confidence as well as our daughters. Beware: the way we talk to our children becomes their inner voice.

Mom Confidence Builder: Start saying more positive messages about yourself so your child overhears.  You may feel “strange” at first, but you’ll be boosting your confidence by reducing negativity, and helping your daughter use positive self-talk and be less critical of herself.

3. Change One Thing – Just One!

From our height to our eye color – we are never satisfied with ourselves.  Obviously, there are things we can’t change–but there are things we can tweak, which in turn, can send a great message to our daughters: “I accept there are things I can’t change, but if there’s one small switch that makes me feel better, I’m doing it!”

Mom Confidence Builder: One little change equals a big confidence booster and making an investment in yourself will teach your daughter that you care about yourself. So is there one little thing you’ve always wished to change–maybe it’s that small gap in your teeth? A makeup change? A new hairstyle? Or maybe it’s building a skill that would boost your confidence? Finishing that degree? Taking a cooking class? Learning computer skills? Just one!

4. Strengthen Healthy Eating Habits

Studies show kids are worrying about dieting and losing weight at younger ages.  Don’t undermine your influence: your daughter’s ideas about her body image can come from you.  Halt your focus on looks, dieting, caloric intake and the quest for that smaller dress.

Mom Confidence Builder: The trick to turning your eating habits and fascination with size and calories is to involve your daughter in the process.  It will help you and your daughter develop healthier eating habits and boost your relationship.  Teach your daughter how to make healthy snacks, get her involved with you in meal planning or grow a vegetable garden.

5. Foster Your Strengths and Interests

Take time for yourself.  It sends our daughters the right message and relieves stress on mom and child.  Developing your strengths and interest, helps handle stress and cope with life more effectively.  Possessing these qualities is a proven confidence booster and gives us that inner glow that radiates “This is what I’m good at.”

Mom Confidence Builder: Don’t pick a strength or a hobby that’s too time-consuming! Get your daughter involved in the activity so you can develop the strength together!  All you need to do is find a “common connector activity” such as yoga, knitting or biking.  And that’s what confidence building is all about!

Michele Borba

Follow me on twitter @micheleborba